I have seven letters after my name, but I often feel as though I’m in desperate need of education. I can’t look at the news without thinking how much I’d benefit from a good history degree, for instance. More and … Continue reading Teach Me Baroque Art History
It’s a new world order. Continue reading “A day of mourning for George HW Bush”
Claude Monet was born with the gift of seeing things new and without any necessary devotion to denotation. Yet in later life, he saw almost nothing. What filtered through the cataracts – was he painting what was, or what seemed to be? Continue reading “S&R Honors: Claude Monet”
Perhaps the iconic trickster Coyote is a symbol for the frustrations of the smart person in a stupid world. Continue reading “In defense of Coyote”
The 2017 remake of the manga classic is marvelous to behold, but not especially filling emotionally.
Went to see Ghost in the Shell the other day. In IMAX. IMAX 3-D, to be precise. Initial impressions:
1) It’s just fucking gorgeous. The designers have studied the classics, from Blade Runner on down, and they create a world that does justice to the genre. This flick ought to win all the technical Oscars.
2) The story itself works well. Continue reading “Ghost in the Shell: a 2-minute review”
These truths we hold to be self-evident…
The Turning – Samhain 1991 1. In this dry land crickets fear to chirp for waste of moisture. Rattlers bleach their bones, listless in the summer scald. 2. I don't want to say too much for fear of being misconstrued or maybe for fear of being understood all too clearly so here's your warning – Continue reading "Poem for the Trump Inaugural: "The Turning""
No, famous people won’t stop dying on January 1. But we lost too many bright lights this year and we hope that 2017 will be better. Here’s a list of noteworthy people who died in 2016.
For the past several months a lot of us have been saying we can’t wait for this damned year to be over.
2016 gave us the worst election season I can remember, and every ten minutes or so another beloved artist would die, it seemed. Any year that gives us Donald Trump and takes Muhammad Ali, David Bowie, Prince in return has done more damage than some decades.
No, people aren’t going to stop dying at the stroke of midnight tomorrow. Continue reading “Remembering 2016: the year when everyone died”
I have always supported independent artists, but that support has not often been reciprocated. This bothers me.
[Caveat: I’ll apologize in advance if this one sounds a little bitchy. That isn’t my intent, but I know people don’t always hear what I think I’m saying.]
Ever since we started this blog in 2007, and really for a good number of years before that via different media, I have done all I could to support the efforts of artists I found worthy, especially the seemingly numberless independent artists out there who are being all kinds of brilliant without much help from mainstream media or the industry institutions that dominate the areas in which they work. Music, visual arts, photography, literature, you name it – if you’re like me you run across a lot of fantastic creative work, and if you’re like me you want everyone else to appreciate it as much as you do. Continue reading “New Years Resolutions, pt 2: support is a two-way street”
“Tree of Wisdom,” by Alexander Tylevich – Regis University, Denver
Esmé Wonders How She’ll Die
– for Lisa
…perspective is a lie. If I know a pond is round then why should I draw it oval? I will draw it round because round is true. Why should my brush lie to you just because my eyes lie to me? – Terry Pratchett
I shot the boy
whose piano chanted
in the monastery of rain. Continue reading “Esmé Wonders How She’ll Die”
Dylan is one of the greatest artists of his time. But his genius wasn’t about Literature.
Part 1 of a series.
The Nobel Committee today awarded American folk icon Bob Dylan its annual prize for Literature. Not surprisingly, reactions have been mixed.
I’m a bit torn myself. There is no questioning at all the immensity of Dylan’s artistic accomplishments, and there’s perhaps even less argument to be had over the influence he has wielded not only over popular music, but over the larger culture. It is simply impossible to imagine what the US would look like today had he never been born, but we can start by considering his role in the anti-war movement of the ’60s. In truth, you could look at his centrality to the revolts that eventually led to the end of that war and make a case that he deserved the Peace Prize.
And what about the who’s who of musical artists who followed in his steps? A very small catalog of those who owe their souls to Dylan would include these names, and if there’s nobody on here that you love and admire you just don’t like music. Continue reading “Nobel Committee gives Bob Dylan the wrong prize”
With the 1962 World’s Fair, Seattle asserted itself as the city that invented the future. Seattle Center, home to the Space Needle, Key Arena, the Pacific Science Center and other Jetsonesque architectural wonders, gave us a stunning Mid-Century Modern vision of our presumed technotopian future. In 2000 the EMP Museum opened, inserting a postmodern generational overlay in the form of Frank Gehry’s gripping postmodern architectural style. Ever upward, ever forward. For #HopeTuesday today, I offer you a metaphor. Let’s rekindle our dream of a clean, sustainable, prosperous future with opportunity for all – a true and attainable American dream. I took this shot of the … Continue reading Monorail to the Future: reasserting the American Dream for #HopeTuesday
An icon of the American theatre, Edward Albee, died this week. Scholars & Rogues honors him and notes the small ways that the influence of great artists can affect our lives for years to come.
We read The Zoo Story in one of my classes at Wake Forest – maybe freshman or sophomore year. I absolutely loved it. I think Jerry spoke to my teenage sense of who I was and what I didn’t want to be, and this dynamic was reinforced by the culture of the university. Wake was conservative and elite. I was conservative, but working class. Many of my fellow students were preparing themselves for sensible, practical, conventional lives. I wanted to be a poet. So while I don’t believe I necessarily understood that tension then the way I do now, I felt an immediacy in Peter and Jerry’s confrontation that, truth be told, still resonates for me today. Continue reading “Me, Albee and the Butterfly Effect: Scholars & Rogues Honors”
I recently took the camera up to Denver’s River North Arts District (RiNo) to shoot some of the street art in the neighborhood’s alleys. There is a lot of talent in the 5280, and I thought I’d share some of it for #HopeTuesday. (Captions are my titles.)
Artists don’t decide what their calling is. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
When I set out to become a photographer way back in 2012 I had an idea what I was going to be. I live in Colorado, you see, so I was going to shoot majestic western landscapes. You know, like every other photographer in the state. I even bought a wide-angle lens for the purpose, not really understanding that wasn’t what wide-angles were for. They can be used for certain types of outdoor expansive shots, but they’re really great for making the indoors look huge.
But then something happened. Continue reading ““Slothful bitches”: the artist muses on the capricious nature of muses (ArtsWeek)”
Old men are signal. Young men are noise.
When I was a young writer I swung for the fence with every syllable. I felt like any word that didn’t crush you with profound implications for eternity was a wasted opportunity. I resented articles. I didn’t understand white space, breathing room, the need for silence between beats, and I had little time for the banal, pedestrian-mongering wanks who did.
I learned more about these things as I grew, and I think becoming a photographer has honed those lessons even more. Noise drowns signal.
Even though I’m no longer a poet, I sometimes read things I wrote in that past life. Continue reading “The Butterfly Effect: revisiting an old poem”
An unremarkable corner in downtown Denver. No signage announces the nature of the business within. But this is My Brother’s Bar, one of the 5280’s most historic spots, and if you know a bit about the Beats, you know that this is the place from Kerouac’s On the Road. Everything has changed around it, but the place itself? More or less the same.
Audre Lorde taught us that power begins with knowing and accepting ourselves.
In our world, divide and conquer must become define and empower.
We’ve been taught that silence would save us, but it won’t.
It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.
The reading list for the contemporary poetry seminar during my first semester in the MA program at Iowa State was an interesting one. Elizabeth Bird, Louise Erdrich, Richard Wright, Charles Wright, Gary Snider, Carolyn Forché, plus a couple others I can’t recall right now. Also, the point of today’s story, Audre Lorde, a writer I had never heard of.
It was Fall of 1987 and it was a fascinating, albeit frustrating class. Continue reading “Audre Lorde: S&R Honors an icon of artistic vision, diversity and self-awareness”
The other day I posted this shot, from Sarawub Intarot at National Geographic, on Facebook.
According to Wikipedia:
Some cities hold Gallery hops and “art walks,” in which a number of the town’s art galleries or artists’ studios will open their doors into Friday evening. Continue reading “Tomorrow is First Friday: get out and support the arts”
One of the symptoms of depression is an addiction to rumination. The vicious cycle of negative thinking that strips us of energy and desire. It is precisely our obsession with working out what makes us unhappy that makes us unhappy. – Chris Corner
Three or four years ago I wrapped my fourth book of poetry and hung up my quill, as it were. Continue reading “Photography may have saved my life”